Winter Fishing Tips
Winter fishing is generally from November to March and usually involves: snow, numb fingers, frozen guides, finicky fish, quiet rivers and shitty grins. Bring hot coffee or tea!! With less hours of sunlight on the water, the window of time to hook up is minimized. Adhering to bankers' hours isn't a bad idea as 10:00-3:00 will be the most productive time period to rip lips in the winter season. Use wading belt!! With less insects hatching, nymphing and streaming are your most productive presentations.
Dress warmly!! A great idea is packing an extra bag of clothing; it can make the world of difference if you are wet and cold. Wading staffs are a smart idea. Get out there and catch some winter fish...
Fly fishing only! Closed to fishing downstream of the falls! Target the big ones between the hatchery and the headwaters. Use 9ft leaders, and 6x or 7x flourocarbon tippets. 3-5wt rods are a good choice.
Wise flies are BWO's, midges, eggs, soft hackle pheasant tails, cased caddis, minnow buggers, slump busters.
The Deschutes is closed to fishing upstream of Benham Falls!
The section between Benham Falls and Bend holds a lot of feisty rainbows and big browns.
Productive patterns are christmas princes, anato mays, san juan worms, sculpzillas, slump busters, BWO's.
The lower Deschutes is the place to be if you are chasing chrome. The steelhead are well spread out in the river and with the winter weather here, the crowds will be thinning. Try girdle bugs, rock worms, muddler minnows, fleshy eggs, egg sucking leeches, street walkers, freight trains.
The road construction is finished at Bowman Dam.
The Crooked is running at 155 cfs below the reservoir. The farther downstream the water moves from the dam, the more fluctuations in temp. so target the runs and pocket water closer to the reservoir.
Try scuds, sow bugs, eggs, zebras, surveyors, BWO's.